The Atlanta Braves and outfielder Jonny Gomes agreed Thursday to a $4 million, one-year contract with a vesting option, a deal subject to a successful physical before it can be finalized. Gomes, who played for Boston and Oakland in 2014, could be part of a left field platoon in a new-look outfield. He could share time with former Yankees prospect Zoilo Almonte, a switch-hitter who signed as a free agent. Gomes, 34, hit only .234 with a career-low six homers for Boston and Oakland last year.

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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 25th, 2015
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Whether he’s out on the town or simply checking messages, general manager Rick Hahn can sense the excitement and optimism surrounding the Chicago White Sox. ”Thank you.” It’s been a big offseason on both sides of the town with the Cubs and White Sox making a series of moves that have their fans believing years of losing are just about over. The White Sox think they’re in position to compete for the AL Central championship after a dizzying offseason in which they made key additions to their lineup, rotation and bullpen. Chicago added some left-handed pop by signing Adam LaRoche and bolstered its rotation by trading for right-hander Jeff Samardzija with one year left on his contract.

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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 25th, 2015
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Bud Selig began his 8,173rd and final day in charge of baseball by waking up in a Manhattan hotel, having breakfast and working out. … If one uses a lot of vision it could.” Selig headed the group that forced Commissioner Fay Vincent’s resignation in September 1992. Owner of the Milwaukee Brewers since 1970, he was put in charge as chairman of the executive council and finally elected commissioner in July 1998 after years of saying he would never take the job. His reign saw expanded playoffs and wild-card teams, interleague play, video review to aid umpires, expansion to Arizona and Tampa Bay, the formation of baseball’s Internet and broadcast companies and the start of drug testing – too late for some critics.

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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 24th, 2015
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Infielder Eric Sogard has reached a $1,075,000, one-year contract with the Oakland Athletics to avoid salary arbitration, and left-hander Fernando Abad also agreed to a one-year deal Friday. Sogard, who earned $510,000 last year, asked for $1,425,000, while the A’s offered $900,000. He had a 1.57 ERA over a career-high 69 appearances in his first full season in the majors last year with Oakland, when he made $525,900.

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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 24th, 2015
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General managers aren’t kidding when they insist teams can never have enough pitching. It’s not even February yet, and we’ve already learned the Oakland A’s will be without a key member in their bullpen for the foreseeable future. On Friday, the team announced that All-Star closer Sean Doolittle has a slight tear of the rotator cuff is his left shoulder. Doolittle is also experiencing considerable inflammation in the area, according to MLB.com’s Jane Lee , and the team is already preparing to be without him for opening day.  The A’s say Doolittle will be reevaluated at a later date before determining the next step. Not expected to be ready by start of season. — Jane Lee (@JaneMLB) January 23, 2015 With that, Billy Beane’s recent acquisition of Tyler Clippard takes on new significance. The soon-to-be 30-year-old right-hander has closing experience, notching 32 saves for the Washington Nationals in 2012. And though he’s excelled over the past two seasons as a set up man, posting a 2.29 ERA over 147 appearances, he’s a natural fit to assume the closer’s role again. The timing also suggests Oakland acquired Clippard as insurance, knowing full well that Doolittle may be sidelined.  Joe Stiglich of Comcast Sports Net reported  that Doolittle pitched through similar discomfort last season and aggravated it again when he started his offseason throwing program, which lends more credence to that thought. However, A’s assistant general manager David Frost insists that trade was made independent of Doolittle’s condition.  Forst says Clippard trade was made independent of Doolittle’s condition. But no doubt, adding him bolsters depth given this news #Athletics — Joe Stiglich (@JoeStiglichCSN) January 24, 2015 Either way, it really does set up well for Oakland in the short term, and there remains plenty of optimism that’s all the arrangement will need to be.  Doolittle has a small rotator cuff tear, inflammation. He had a platelet-rich plasma injection and will be re-evaluated. — Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) January 23, 2015 Asst GM David Forst tells me that doctors do not believe that Doolittle will need surgery; rest and treatment should resolve the issue. — Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) January 23, 2015 With question marks all over the starting rotation, a deeper bullpen will be essential in Oakland’s bid for a fourth straight postseason appearance. The A’s also have experienced arms in  Ryan Cook and Dan Otero to pick up some of the slack, but having a healthy and effective Cliipard-Doolittle combo in the late innings is the set up they obviously desire. And with good reason.  Now, it’s a waiting game as the healing process begins, but don’t be surprised if an aggressive Billy Beane reemerges should the waiting go on too long.  More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: – - – - – - – Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Townie813

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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 23rd, 2015
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ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Braves and outfielder Jonny Gomes have agreed to a one-year contract with a vesting option.

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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 23rd, 2015
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Today we’ll get ready for the 2015 MLB season with a team-by-team bullpen audit.

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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 22nd, 2015
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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 21st, 2015
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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 20th, 2015
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Post info: By TheSmallBallWay on January 20th, 2015
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